Above Machu Picchu, Inca archeological site, Cordillera Vilcabamba, Peru.
From atop the peak of Huayna Picchu, see terraces of the Machu Picchu archeological site in the Cordillera Vilcabamba, Andes mountains, Peru, South America. The Incas built temples, terraces, and a trail up the peak of Huayna Picchu ("Young Peak" in Quechua, 2720 meters or 8920 feet above sea level). Machu Picchu was built around 1450 AD as an estate for the Inca emperor Pachacuti (14381472). Spaniards passed in the river valley below but never discovered Machu Picchu during their conquest of the Incas 1532-1572. The outside world was unaware of the "Lost City of the Incas" until revealed by American historian Hiram Bingham in 1911. Machu Picchu perches at 2430 meters elevation (7970 feet) on a well defended ridge 450 meters (1480 ft) above a loop of the Urubamba/Vilcanota River ( Sacred Valley of the Incas). UNESCO honored the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu on the World Heritage List in 1983.Add to Cart Add to Lightbox Download